IBM DB2 Express-C Edition

At the present writing, IBM provides for free a complete, downloadable distribution of IBM® DB2® Express-C Edition. IBM DB2 Express-C provides the power of IBM DB2 to Manifold System users at no additional charge.


IBM DB2-Express C may be used by Manifold Enterprise Edition users to configure Enterprise Servers for use with Enterprise Edition or to store drawings using geometry data types as well as tables. See the Geometry in Tables topic.




IBM DB2 Express-C Edition is derived from the same engine upon which IBM DB2 is built, so it shares the very high performance of IBM's flagship DBMS products. When delivered in IBM DB2 Express-C form, IBM has limited the database engine in two key ways:


§      IBM DB2 Express-C may be installed on a multiple CPU machine, but it will execute (run) only on up to two processors or up to two processor cores if multi-core processors are used.

§      IBM DB2 Express-C may be installed on a server with any amount of memory, but will use only up to 4 GB of available RAM memory.


Other than these limitations IBM DB2 Express-C provides essentially the full power and breadth of IBM DB2 capabilities. In particular, there is no limit on the size of databases and no limit on the number of simultaneous users.


Manifold System documents use of IBM DB2 Express-C within Manifold applications for several purposes:


§      All Manifold System users can use DB2 Express-C to create high performance databases in which tables, drawings, images and surfaces may be stored. Those tables, drawings, images and surfaces can then be imported or linked into Manifold projects. Users may also write scripts that exploit the power of DB2 for the creation of databases and tables that may be used by their projects.

§      All Manifold System users can store drawings within DB2 databases for concurrent, multi-user editing of drawings. If we have Manifold Database Administrator Edition we can configure DB2 storage using the Administrator Console to enable user-friendly features such as friendly names, formatting storage for drawings and pre-set import and link options.

§      Manifold Enterprise Edition users can create Enterprise servers within DB2 databases hosted by a DB2 Express-C server. Because there is no limit to the size of databases or the number of users permitted to a DB2 Express-C installation, it is a good choice for Enterprise Server applications.

§      Manifold Enterprise Edition users can create a spatial index for drawings within DB2 Express-C databases to confer true spatial DBMS capability unto DB2 Express-C. Once Enterprise Edition has been used to create a spatial index within a given DB2 Express-C database, users of any Manifold System edition can take advantage of that spatial index, for example, to link objects from drawings within a given area of interest.

§      IBM offers a Spatial Extender for DB2 that provides IBM's own spatial DBMS capability for DB2. As of the summer of 2007, the Spatial Extender became available as a free download for DB2 Express-C. Manifold supports native DB2 / Spatial Extender functionality for those users who are working with Spatial Extender. Although Manifold allows using geometry types from other vendors (including Manifold's own geometry type) together with generic spatial indices established by Manifold, if the DBMS vendor has their own spatial types it makes sense to use them. Therefore, if you are working with DB2 / Spatial Extender strongly recommends using native DB2 geometry types and not generic spatial indices or some other geometry type for drawings.


Because IBM DB2 Express-C is the same as IBM DB2 except for the processor / RAM limitations, if a Manifold application outgrows these limits it is very easy to scale upward by installing a full IBM DB2 license. Usually when an application grows so large that it outgrows IBM DB2 Express-C limits it is sufficiently important to merit the additional expense of procuring a full IBM DB2 license.


Installation and Configuration


The installation package currently downloadable from IBM installs IBM DB2 Express-C and configures it to start automatically on system startup.


IBM has distributed several versions of IBM DB2 Express-C. IBM DB2 Express-C Edition is used in this documentation since it is widely used. Consult the applicable IBM website for information on newer versions that may be available.




IBM DB2 Express-C Edition may be used for Enterprise Edition Enterprise Servers without any technical limitations. However, two small usage limitations apply when DB2 Express-C is used for storing geometry in tables in the database to support subsequent concurrent, multiuser editing. When a drawing is linked from a DB2 Express-C data source the following limitations apply:


·      Adding a new object and immediately editing it without refreshing the drawing creates an editing conflict.

·      Adding a new object and immediately deleting it without refreshing the drawing will fail.


Therefore, when ever editing drawings linked from a DB2 Express-C data source make sure to refresh the drawing after adding a new object before attempting to edit that object or to delete that object.


No Technical Support


Important: does not provide any support whatsoever for installation, administration, management, configuration or use of the DBMS products provided by IBM. See the Database Installations topic for details.


See Also


Database Administrator Edition

Database Console

Database Installations

Enterprise Edition


IBM Links


Links to websites change frequently. The links below have been provided to give an idea of what information is typically available via the vendor's websites.


IBM's home page for DB2 Express:


The following links and descriptions have been provided by IBM:


Article: DB2 Express-C, the developer-friendly alternative:


This article shows how you can get started quickly using DB2 Express-C for all of your applications, and also provides an automation and tuning scenario to optimize your application.


developerWorks: Resources for DB2 Express-C:


These developerWorks pages feature technical and support information, and help you find the information you need to start using the DB2 Express-C features and functions. The pages also include non-technical information for your extended development or management teams.


DB2 Technical Library:


The developerWorks information team has recently redesigned the DB2 Technical Library search engine and put the most popular collections of information, articles, product documentation, Redbooks, and tutorials, in an easy-to-use format. Use this tool to locate the DB2 information you need.


Media: DB2 Express-C Discovery Kit (DVD):


Prefer to get your product code and content on media? DB2 Express-C code images and related resources are available on DVD for Windows and Linux platforms. Request a no-charge copy for yourself.


DB2 Redbook Library:


IBM Redbooks are written by leading IBM technical experts. Small teams write the Redbooks during four- to six-week residencies. Sample these professional-grade publications online at no charge.


Porting to DB2 Universal Database:


The developerWorks DB2 Universal Database porting site gives you the information you need to port an application and its data from other database management systems to DB2 UDB.


How to buy IBM software products:


IBM DB2 Universal Database Express-C is a no-charge product which is released without formal IBM support. If you decide you need 24/7 support from IBM, you must upgrade to the full version of DB2 Express, or other qualified DB2 products. There are a number of ways to buy IBM software. Please choose the method that best fits your needs.